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In 2010, Little Boxes burst onto the scene as the most fun way to handle Black Friday without setting foot in the big-box madness.

The concept is simple: Every year, more than 200 Portland shops band together for a city-wide shopping party. For each store you visit, you get another entry in a giant raffle that includes dream vacations, gift cards, and other flat-out cool stuff. But not only do you walk away with great finds, it’s also good for the local economy. In 2015, the two-day shopping spree generated more than $550,000 for the city. More than 22,558 shop visits were recorded, resulting in 7,353 purchases and 46,000+ raffle entries over the course of the two-day event.

But heading into its seventh year, founders Betsy Cross and Will Cervarich were juggling a newborn daughter and a full-time business, Betsy & Iya. So they decided it was time to find someone else to take over.

Enter Built Oregon, a nonprofit launched in 2014 with the goal of amplifying local entrepreneurs. Cofounders Mitch Daugherty, Rick Turoczy, and Terry St. Marie all come from business and investment backgrounds and saw the wealth of talent here. “We see Oregon as the Silicon Valley for consumer products and Portland needs to be the showcase," says St. Marie, CFO of Tender Loving Empire. "We eventually want to create a SXSW of consumer products here.”

These big goals are in the works, but in the meantime, Little Boxes returns this weekend. The biggest changes under the new management? A third day of raffle excitement, and instead of the city-wide 10 percent discount, each shop has its own sales and promotions.

St. Marie laughs about Built Oregon taking over the event. “I came here to semi-retire," he says, "but I sort of failed miserably because I kept finding all these amazing opportunities." 

And not that you need the reminder from your friendly fashion editor, but this is the weekend local boutiques count on to make it through the winter slump. Support the local community, not the faceless giants.



  • Amenity Shoes (4110 NE Fremont Street, Portland, OR 97212)
  • Umpqua Bank (4335 NE Fremont St Unit 4, Portland, Oregon 97213)
  • Adorn (4120 NE Fremont St. Portland, Oregon 97212)
  • The Arrangement (4210 NE Fremont St Portland, OR 97213)


Central Eastside

Columbia Corridor


Downtown/West End

East Burnside


Goose Hollow/Stadium



  • Mantel (8202 N Denver Ave., Portland, OR 97217)


Montavilla/East Tabor


Old Town

  • Pendleton HOME Store (220 NW Broadway, Portland, OR 97232)
  • Sock Hop! (117 NW 2nd Ave. Portland Oregon, 97209)
  • BUDD + FINN (316 NW Broadway, Portland, OR 97209)
  • Hello From Portland (514 NW Couch St., Portland, OR 97209)

Pearl District

Portland International District


St. Johns

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